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PO'LE-MARCH, n. [Gr. πολεμαρχος; πολεμος, war, and αρχη, rule, or αρχος, chief.]

  1. Anciently, a magistrate of Athens and Thebes, who had under his care all strangers and sojourners in the city, and all children of parents who had lost their lives in the service of their country. – Encyc. Mitford.
  2. A military officer in Lacedæmon.

PO-LEM'IC, or PO-LEM'IC-AL, a. [Gr. πολεμικος, from πολεμος, war.]

  1. Controversial; disputative; intended to maintain an opinion or system in opposition to others; as, a polemic treatise, discourse, essay or book; polemic divinity.
  2. Engaged in supporting an opinion or system by controversy; as, a polemic writer. South.


A disputant; a controvertist; one who writes in support of an opinion or system in opposition to another. – Pope.

PO-LEM'O-SCOPE, n. [Gr. πολεμος, war, and σκοπεω, to view.]

An oblique perspective glass contrived for seeing objects that do not lie directly before the eye. It consists of a concave glass placed near a plane mirror in the end of a short round tube, and a convex glass in a hole in the side of the tube. It is called opera-glass, or diagonal opera-glass. – Encyc.


  1. A star which is vertical, or nearly so, to the pole of the earth; a lode-star. The northern pole-star is of great use to navigators in the northern hemisphere.
  2. That which serves as a guide or director. – Burton.


A plant of the genus Lythrum. – Fam. of Plants.


A plant of the genus Teucrium. – Fam. of Plants.

POL-I-AN'THES, n. [Gr. πόλις, a city, and ἄνθος, a flower, i. e. city-flower, because it is much cultivated in cities.]

The name of a genus of plants, one species of which, viz. Polianthes tuberosa, is cultivated, under the absurd name of Tuberose, which is merely a vicious pronunciation of its specific name.

PO-LICE, n. [Fr. from L. politia; Gr. πολιτεια, from πολις, city.]

  1. The government of a city or town; the administration of the laws and regulations of a city or incorporated town or borough; as, the police of London, of New York or Boston. The word is applied also to the government of all towns in New England which are made corporations by a general statute, for certain purposes.
  2. The internal regulation and government of a kingdom or state. – Blackstone.
  3. The corporation or body of men governing a city. – Jamieson.
  4. In Scottish, the pleasure-ground about a gentleman's seat.


Regulated by laws; furnished with a regular system of laws and administration. Bacon.


An officer intrusted with the execution of the laws of a city.

POL'I-CY, n. [Fr. police; L. politia; Gr. πολιτεια, from πολις, city, Sans. palya.]

  1. Policy, in its primary signification, is the same as polity, comprehending the fundamental constitution or frame of civil government in a state or kingdom. But by usage, policy is now more generally used to denote what is included under legislation and administration, and may be defined, the art or manner of governing a nation; or that system of measures which the sovereign of a country adopts and pursues, as the best adapted to the interests of the nation. Thus we speak of domestic policy, or the system of internal regulations in a nation; foreign policy, or the measures which respect foreign nations; commercial policy, or the measures which respect commerce.
  2. Art, prudence, wisdom or dexterity in the management of public affairs; applied to persons governing. It has been the policy of France to preclude females from the throne. It has been the policy of Great Britain to encourage her navy, by keeping her carrying trade in her own hands. In this she manifests sound policy. Formerly, England permitted wool to be exported and manufactured in the Low Countries, which was very bad policy. The policy of all laws has made some forms necessary in the wording of last wills and testaments. – Blackstone. All violent policy defeats itself. – Hamilton.
  3. In common usage, the art, prudence or wisdom of individuals in the management of their private or social concerns.
  4. Stratagem; cunning; dexterity of management.
  5. A ticket or warrant for money in the public funds. [It. polizza.]
  6. [Sp. poliza.] Policy, in commerce, the writing or instruction by which a contract of indemnity is effected between the insurer and the insured; or the instrument containing the terms or conditions on which a person or company undertakes to indemnify another person or company against losses of property exposed to peculiar hazards, as houses or goods exposed to fire, or ships and goods exposed to destruction on the high seas. This writing is subscribed by the insurer, who is called the underwriter. The terms policy of insurance or assurance, are also used for the contract between the insured and the underwriter. Policies are valued or open; valued, when the property or goods insured are valued at prime cost; open, when the goods are not valued, but if lost, their value must be proved. – Park. Blackstone. Wagering policies, which insure sums of money, interest or no interest, are illegal. All insurances, interest or no interest, or without further proof of interest than the policy itself, are null and void. – Blackstone. The word policy is used also for the writing which insures against other events, as well as against loss of property.


In gardening, the operation of dispersing the worm-casts all over the walks, with long ash poles. This destroys the worm-casts and is beneficial to the walks. – Cyc.

POL-ING, ppr.

  1. Furnishing with poles for support.
  2. Bearing on poles.
  3. Pushing forward with poles, as a boat.

PO'LISH, a. [from Slav. pole, a plain, whence Poland. See the Verb.]

Pertaining to Poland, a level country on the south of Russia and the Baltic.


  1. A smooth glossy surface produced by friction. Another prism of clearer glass and better polish seemed free from veins. Newton.
  2. Refinement; elegance of manners. What are these wond'rous civilizing arts, / This Roman polish? – Addison.

POL'ISH, v.i.

To become smooth; to receive a gloss; to take a smooth and glossy surface. Steel will polish almost as white and bright as silver. – Bacon.

POL'ISH, v.t. [Fr. polir, polissant; Arm. pouliçza; It. polire or pulire; Sp. polir, pulir; L. polio; Dan. polerer; Sw. polera; Russ. poliruyu; W. caboli, with a prefix; Ar. حَفَلَ chafala, to polish. Qu. its alliance to filc.]

  1. To make smooth and glossy, usually by friction; as, to polish glass, marble, metals and the like.
  2. To refine; to wear off rudeness, rusticity and coarseness; to make elegant and polite; as, to polish life or manners. – Milton. The Greeks were polished by the Asiatics and Egyptians. – S.S. Smith.


Capable of being polished.


Made smooth and glossy; refined.


State of being polished, or of being refined and elegant. – Denne. Coventry.


The person or instrument that polishes. – Addison.


Smoothness; glossiness; refinement. – Goldsmith.


Making smooth and glossy; refining.


Refinement. – Waterhouse.